Smart Parenting: Being courteous makes you a winner
NO one likes rude people. They spoil our mood, even our day. But unfortunately, there are so many around, and a recent Reader’s Digest survey confirmed this. Out of 36 cities tested, Kuala Lumpur came in second in “The Least Courteous City” list!
There is some small comfort though. Our neighbouring cities, including Singapore and Bangkok, have also been grouped together with us in the top 11. Asians, in general, are being accused of lacking in courtesy.
It’s not that surprising as we probably have also experienced such behaviour many times before. Rude people are everywhere; it’s little wonder that we meet them every day. But then, we ourselves may be guilty of being less than courteous in our dealings.
Before we start blaming others for jumping queues, not holding the door, ignoring traffic rules or not cleaning up their mess in a fast food outlet, let’s honestly ask ourselves if we too aren’t guilty of committing any of the above. It’s okay if the answer is “yes” — because, what’s more important is that we are now more aware and are therefore unlikely to repeat such discourteous behaviour.
SIGNS OF HAPPINESS
Acknowledging that we are part of the problem is a big step towards creating a more courteous society. The best way to combat this social menace is to fight it head on — by being courteous.
This takes courage because it is so much easier to also join the queue-cutters instead of waiting for our turn.
We may also ask why we should use our car indicator before making a turn when the guy in front has just swerved across our path without any remorse. Some may swear off holding doors open for others because no one even bothered to look their way, let alone say “thank you.”
Yes, the reasons why we can be equally rude far outnumber the reasons to remain courteous. But being courteous is a clear sign of happiness. A happy person has no problem smiling at others, helping someone to pick up packages dropped or holding the door open for someone else.
He would happily offer his seat to the elderly or throw away his empty packs after his meal at a fast food restaurant even though such a habit is rare here.
Such people do not feel small when being courteous because deep inside, they are very happy people. No one can take that away. Such people only want to share their happiness, even with total strangers.
We all can be this happy person. The next time people are rude to us, dont’t get angry. Tell them nicely, if we can, how it should be done. Be grateful that we are the happy ones. It might be that the other party is troubled about something.
THE WAITER’S TEST
When being courteous, we are also being respectful to our fellow human beings, regardless of how we feel and whether they deserve it or not. If you are not feeling up to it, consider this: successful people are the ones who have high regard for others, regardless of their social and economic status. They know that when they are polite, somehow the day will go much smoother. They can then focus on what they do best — making a successes of themselves.
Have you heard of the “Waiter’s Test”? It was said that to see a person’s true personality, one can observe how he interacts with a waiter. Is he rude and demanding, or is he polite and appreciative? Even a wealthy and powerful person is not truly successful if he’s rude to others, waiters included. The true hero is the one who appreciates and respects others around them.
LIFE IS SHORT
In that same list, New York is rated as “The Most Courteous City” of all. It came as a surprise as that may have not been true before September 11, 2001. The tragedy has truly brought the New Yorkers together, and reminded them that life is very short after all. They began to be nice to others so that each day would run a little smoother and happier.
We don’t need a tragedy to remind us about how to be courteous. Every parent has the responsibility to ensure that a new cycle of courtesy begins in our own home. Expose our children to courtesy by being role models. Stop the urge to “retaliate”. Show them that we are the heroes and winners by being courteous.
After all, life is indeed short. Let’s make the rest of our days truly happy ones by re-instilling courtesy in our lives .